I knew that you go to the hospital if you are sick or hurt. That is why I chose to have you at home. Your father and I found two wonderful midwives, who checked up on me and you with loving hands and hearts during the time you were growing in my body.
A couple of weeks prior to your due date, I had a dream that you were a baby girl, born on a Friday during the full moon. I was holding you, looking down at you and you were staring up at me. You had blue eyes and light brown hair. I was sure I would have a baby with very dark hair so I didn’t think much about that dream.
Your due date was May 22. That day came and went and people said to me “you have to get uncomfortable and sick of being pregnant before your baby comes”. I felt so great, I thought, ‘Oh no, this baby is never going to come out!’
May 25, Tuesday – bloody show! At my midwives scheduled pre-natal, they suggested that baby’s position needed a bit of a change before labor got going. In the middle of the night, I started having surges. Very light, not intense, but strong enough to keep me from sleeping, stronger when laying down. I called the midwives and was told to get on my hands and knees and swivel my hips around during a surge. That would help move you into a good position for the rest of the labor and your delivery.
May 26, Wednesday. Your dad went to work and your grandma Bubby and I went for a long walk to the store where we wandered around the gardening section to look at flowers. This last week of my pregnancy, I loved looking at flowers! The surges weren’t strong during the day and it felt easy to walk around. When bedtime came, I was up all night again, getting up to walk every 10-30 minutes. Checked in with my midwives, and their suggestion was take a warm shower and a sip of wine. I actually slept for 2 hours!
May 27, Thursday. Came and went without much change. I did have them come over to check on me and was told I was 2.5 centimeters dilated. She called what I was doing something, but said it wasn’t active labor and I shouldn’t pay it too much attention. Looking for relief and sleep I tried the shower and wine again but little relief came. My husband, Kenny got me a heating pad but the only thing that really seemed to help was when I sat in Bubby’s lap (my mom) even though I was bigger than she was! She rocked us.
May 28, Friday (and a full moon). At 1:00 am I woke up Bubby. My legs were shaking and the tightening in my back was getting stronger. I said “I feel like I’m possessed”. I couldn’t get my legs to stop shaking. I sat on the couch and my mom gave me juice to drink and I tried to rest between surges. When I felt one start, like electricity in my back, I would jump up and walk around, eventually doing what mom said looked like a primitive dance. I felt very primal, kneeling and pushing one foot and then the other into the ground. It felt like I wanted to push my body through my feet and into the earth. At 2:00 am mom called the midwives. I said “I can’t do this fake labor any longer” and I was worried about not having enough energy for when real labor started. Our midwives said they would come over in about an hour. They arrived about 3:00 am. I was tired and grumpy and feeling hopeless. I said I wanted to go to the hospital. I wanted an epidural. My midwife said “You can go and have your baby there, or you can stay and have your baby here”. I said I hated doctors and hospital, and she said “You have to want to have the baby here, because this is where you really want to be, not because you hate the other place”. I didn’t say anything because I guess I really didn’t know how much I wanted to have you here, at home. All I really knew is that I could do without this fake labor.
My midwife suggested that during a surge I put one leg up on the couch and circle my hips. It really hurt, but I did it. Then she had me get down on my hands and knees. She circled my hips in this position during the surge. It relieved all of the tightening! WOW! I couldn’t believe it. I was given a homeopathic under my tongue. Kenny woke up and he was surprised to see all that was happening! We decided to check my cervix. I had lost all hope and my determination. Eight centimeters! Suddenly I had a huge rush of positive energy . I felt completely revived. My midwife gave me a hug and had a sparkle in her eye. I asked her if she was lying to me so that I would feel better? “No” was her welcomed response. I was the happiest and most relieved I had every been in my entire life. It was time to get into the birth tub!
I was beyond myself with excitement. I was in active labor! I would get to meet my baby soon! This was really happening! Surges still so strong, but now it felt like a good strong, because I was working towards my goal and would get my baby born. I asked Kenny if he was read to be a dad, because he was going to be one very soon!. While the tub was being readied for me, I felt a warm gush in my underwear…oh! “I think my water broke”. I walked into a lighted room to check and saw clear liquid. I knew everything was ok. Because of days of surges, I was in doubt but now each surge brought with it an unequivocal sense of joy and excitement. I heard “the tub is ready for you”. My knee jerk response was “maybe I wasn’t ready to get in yet”. Then I had an intense surge and suddenly I couldn’t wait to get in ASAP! IT. FELT. GOOD!
I stayed leaning forward in the warm water because the surges felt better that way. I remembered your Aunt Juliette telling me that in between surges you get to rest, and so between I would think, “Ahhhh, this is my rest, now I relax”, and I took advantage of the quiet periods, savoring every peaceful moment. Mom was rubbing my back and telling me that I was doing a good job. It was nice that she was touching me, but as the intensity grew I said “I need the midwives!” They took turns on my back. It really helped. I heard the dogs barking and said “be quiet dogs’! During one of my rests I felt hungry and I ate watermelon and drank Acari-blueberry juice. I felt cold, and instantly hot water was added to the tub. The power in my back was so strong, yet everything else in the room was so still: the rest of my body, my mind, the room. My only thought was centered on what was happening right there, right then. I said “Oppppppeeeeeennnnnn” and spread my arms open wide. All I could do was feel it and rest in between. A quick cervical check and I was completely dilated!!
My midwife said that when I felt like pushing, I could push. I put my finger in my birth canal and felt your little head, so soft and…right there! Soon I felt like pushing. I couldn’t feel the surges in my back any more. I couldn’t feel any surges! I don’t know how I knew when to push, I just knew. I could take as much time as I needed. After three nights of not sleeping and thinking I was in labor, I was ready to push you out as soon as possible, (of course I was clueless as to the sleepless nights ahead!). I felt your head again, and smiled. I felt very happy ad serene touching your little head and I said, “okay baby, I’m going to push your out”. I leaned forward with my hands on the edge of the tub and pushed so hard! I howled from a place so deep I never knew it was there! I pushed one more time, so hard, and you POPPED right out! I was so surprised! I saw your arms and legs in the water and grabbed for you. I felt like I was just fumbling around but somehow I managed to put my hand under one of your little shoulders. I picked you up out of the water, your arms and legs outstretched and I just stared at your face. The room was very quiet and all I could hear was Kenny crying for happiness. I couldn’t believe that a baby had just popped right out of my body. I held you and stared at your face. Where did this baby come from? This baby with blue eyes and light brown hair, born on a Friday under the full moon. I brought you close to my body, you looked up at me and our eyes locked. I wasn’t worried about you because as I looked into your eyes, I knew you were safe in my arms. I didn’t care if you were a boy or a girl, I was completely content to hold you, look at you. I finally thought “I guess I should check to see, because that’s what people do”. I asked Kenny if he was ready to find out. He said yes so I moved your legs and we looked. I just stared at your pink yoni. It was all of my dream….a baby girl, blue eyes, light brown hair, Friday, full moon, gazing into my eyes. I only wanted a healthy baby and I knew your were by looking into your eyes. I secretly wanted a baby girl and knew you were by looking at your yoni. Kenny said calmly “it’s a girl”. You were rooting on my chest so we got out of the water, walked 2 steps to our bed, that very bed where you were conceived.
Your first check up happened on my lap, on our bed. 7#3oz. Now that I knew what labor was, and now that I had met you, I was so grateful that I gave birth to you at home. My labor was just that, my labor. Your birth was just that, your birth. I did things on my own time, in the comfort of my own home with abundant support of my own mother, my husband and my midwives. I knew what I needed to do to open the world for your beautiful entrance.
Aimee H. has a Master of Arts in Sociology and Education Specialist Teaching Credential. She has taught Special Education and is currently a happily at home mother of now two home born girls.